Yesterday, NPR announced that New Zealand passed a law making most semi-automatic weapons illegal. This doesn’t only prohibit the selling of these weapons, but also prohibits owning these weapons and states that everyone who has one currently has until the end of September to return their weapons through a buyback program. This comes less than a month after a terrorist attack on mosques which lead to 50 people killed. Meanwhile, in the US we have already had 80 mass shootings just this year and we have yet to make any legislative progress in regards to gun control. Perhaps this is Continue reading Gun Control: New Zealand Did It… Why Can’t We?
Sooner rather than later Andrew Yang’s main idea, Universal Basic Income (UBI), will enter the national discussion on some level. Yang has reached the 65,000-donor threshold to appear in debates later this year. As such, this bold proposal is one that major candidates may have to take positions on. Below are the main details of and arguments for his UBI proposal. This is not an endorsement of Andrew Yang 2020. The Problem Yang, a successful entrepreneur, argues that we are undergoing the greatest technological and economic shift we’ve ever experienced. Automation has already destroyed millions of manufacturing jobs. He cites Continue reading A 2020 Presidential Candidate’s Proposal for Universal Basic Income
In 2012, two men approached Masterpiece Cakeshop to bake a cake for their same-sex wedding. Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, refused to bake this particular cake for religious reasons. The couple went on to file a formal complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission for sexual orientation discrimination. The initial ruling stated that Philips did not have a first amendment right to deny the gay couple’s request for a cake. The commission also “ordered Jack and his staff to either violate Jack’s faith by designing custom wedding cakes that celebrate same-sex marriages or stop designing all wedding cakes, which was Continue reading Liberty in the Name of Liberty: Forced to Bake a Cake, Eating It, and Having It Too
Have you ever wondered where the US tax revenue exactly comes from and where it goes? To most US citizens the thought of traversing a mountain of US government financial data could seem like a nightmare. But this nightmare is no more, thanks to our friendly neighborhood (former) Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer. With the help of economists, writers, researchers from the academic communities, Ballmer was able to compile government financial data into a user-friendly format. USAFacts is this “portrait” of the US tax system. USAFacts is described by Ballmer a “nonpartisan, data-driven” website that provides reports on the US population Continue reading USAFacts: An Injection of Facts
The word “taxes” can stir up many emotions for Americans. The general attitude of citizens toward taxes can be ambiguous and unclear. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, a television series on FXX, captures this picture in one of their recent episodes. Two of the main characters become troubled after finding out the local mental institution has released its patients because of statewide cutbacks. One of the characters suggests that they must pay more in taxes to keep these hospitals open. The other character becomes angry and says, “How much do these vultures need? I already pay a ton in taxes… Continue reading Skewed Perception: American Attitude Toward Taxes
The word “Millennials” has been tossed around much in the last decade. It is used to describe individuals born between 1980-2000 by other generations as they have closely watched this young portion of the population to see the direction our world is headed in. After being labeled as lazy, entitled, and addicted to technology, millennials have now been criticized for a loss of faith in democracy. First World countries known for their democratic systems have seen a decline in political participation from their youth. The US, Poland, and Britain saw less than half of their under-25s come out and vote Continue reading A Solution to Millennial Skepticism
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In the past few months the Economist and Time Magazine have reported that there have been steps taken to develop Ketamine as an antidepressant. This drug is a schedule III controlled substance in the US that is usually used to start and maintain anesthesia. It was first produced in the 1960s for this use, but soon began to run through the “club scene” in the US, Hong Kong, and Canada as a recreational drug. In 2009 the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime recorded 6.9 tons of Ketamine being pushed through the illegal drug market. The drug could be helpful Continue reading Drug Abuse as an Externality
In light of the debate last night between America’s two dominant parties, I wanted to talk about the man who didn’t get to make it to the stage. Yes that’s right, there is still someone out there fighting. The man is Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate. The two-term Republican governor of New Mexico, a state that usually votes democratic, claims that most Americans are in fact libertarians but just don’t know it yet. In his interview with Stephen Dubner, Johnson tells listeners his biggest problem, “Right now, 65 percent of Americans don’t even know that I exist”. But Continue reading There’s Another Candidate?
On September 9th, North Korea completed their fifth and largest nuclear test, just fifty miles from the Chinese border. The test was the second this year and a clear example of the increased pace in nuclear trials that Kim Jong Un has been pushing since he inherited power in 2011. The US has attempted to slow this rapidly increasing progression of tests by imposing sanctions and as of July 2016 deploying an advanced missile defense system in South Korea, however, the tests have continued to ensue and now the US is considering placing an embargo on North Korea. According to Continue reading The Game Behind North Korea’s Fifth and Largest Nuclear Test